Archive for February 23rd, 2010

Meetings: My Close-Encounter with a Presbyterian Professor

In 1996, I received my doctorate from the San Francisco Theological Seminary in San Anselmo (SFTS), California.  SFTS is really a gorgeous school, nestled in the foothills of Marin County. One could hardly have asked for a better place to study and engage so many thought-provoking teachers. I believe I was the first rabbi ever to go through their Doctorate of Ministry program. It proved to be a wonderful learning experience that introduced me to Biblical Greek, Christian biblical exegesis, ...

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Life is a Series of Rebirths

As I have written on other occasions, life is a series of rebirths. What we start out in life is often different from what we ultimately become. Let me tell you a well-known story that illustrates this point about the life of Moses. The origin of this story is unknown, but I have seen it mentioned in many books containing medieval rabbinic tales about the famous personalities of the Bible.

Here is how it begins . . .

The whole world was ...

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The Origin of the World’s First Biblical Translation: The Septuagint

Every Apocryphal Story Has  a Germ of Historical Truth

According to an apocryphal legend,[1] Egyptian King Ptolemy Philadelphus (who ruled 285-246 B.C.E.) sent a delegation to a high priest named Eleazar in Jerusalem, who  organized  a group of 72 scribes  to write a new translation of the Bible for the city of  Alexandria.[2] These men purportedly translated the Hebrew Pentateuch into Greek in only seventy-two days.

A Jewish philosopher named Aristeas, records how the scribes felt inspired and arrived at ...

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